Saturday, September 24, 2016

Four Years Old

Earlier this week, Naomi turned four and she had a small birthday celebration with her friends and teachers in her school/day care. Initially, my husband was against the idea of me throwing her a birthday party again this year because he deems such party is not necessary and Naomi is a big girl now. However, I was very adamant about holding the celebration because this year is Naomi's last year in her playschool (Taska) and the party really didn't cost me much.

I don't know about you but I like my kids to have little birthday rituals or celebrations when they are young or in still kindergarten age, because these happy once-in-a-year occasions will be preserved in the childhood happy memory amber somewhere in their little brain.

This year, planning Naomi's birthday party in her school/day care was way less stressful than last year's. In fact, I didn't do much planning at all ahead of time. I booked her cake five days before the D-Day and shopped some birthday party favors for her friends the weekend before her birthday party. I didn't set any specific theme for her birthday either. For simplicity, I decided that her birthday cake for this year should either have Disney Princesses or Mickey Mouse element which she is familiar with. I just let our regular bakery decide which theme they should go with her cake based on their availability on the cake toppers or edible cartoon images in their shop to decorate the cake.

Naomi actually is borderline obsessed with Oggy and the Cockroaches, Dinosaurs and Superheroes but I couldn't grant her those themes this year because Dinosaur was already the theme of her birthday party last year. Oggy is a blue cat which doesn't exactly look like a cat and not a cute cartoon character so I could not have it on Naomi's cake. Moreover, I didn't want to feature the secret identities of Clark Kent, Bruce Wayne and Peter Parker on her birthday party especially since she's a girl. As such, Disney Princesses or Mickey Mouse theme would still be the safe bet.

This year's 1 kg birthday cake.

Naomi birthday party last Tuesday was planned to start around 4.30pm. By then, the kids in the day care were already bathed and probably had taken their milk too so it's a good timing for everyone. My husband could not join us this year because he was busy at work. It was just Mommy and Brennan who attended Naomi's mini birthday party.

Just before I drove to Naomi's school/daycare, I vividly remember I prayed to God to give me a strong heart during Naomi's party because my all-time nemesis, balloons, would be there. PLENTY of them! God, Thou knew'st too well how this child of Thee frets these helium filled rubbery bags so please make her pretend that they did not exist throughout the celebration. Amen. Not to mention that day I was nursing a fever so I was not at my tip top condition to be 100% excited and energetic during the party.

As predicted, when I reached Naomi's school, her teacher was busy pumping balloons for the kids... Since it was my daughter's big day, I tried my best to ignore the balloons around me even though I could not totally disregard the balloon's irritating squeaky sound when the kids rubbed them.

Before the party started.

The sequence of Naomi's birthday celebration was similar to last year's:

Teacher ordered the kids to sit in front of a small table where we placed Naomi's cake. Since all the kids were so thrilled to celebrate their friends' birthday, teacher had to threaten them to stop running around and quietly sit down in front of the table; else the party would not start.

Teacher's threat worked like magic. All the kids sat down while we took photo of the birthday girl with her cake.

Birthday girl and her cake.

The birthday girl was very shy becoming the center of the attention that day so she looked rather stressed when we asked her to smile with her cake.

Family picture with the birthday girl.

Naomi didn't bat an eyelid and found it hard to even smile when her friends sang the birthday song out loud for her. One of Naomi's friends knew that her friends' heartfelt singing would make her eardrums ring so she covered her ears with her hands even before the song was sung. It was so funny I could not help but notice this.

Happy birthday to you!

Then came the candle blowing moment... Teachers arranged all the kids to stand surround the table with Naomi. Naomi's teachers purposely asked the kids who have lifelong history in blowing other kids' birthday candles to stand farther away from Naomi's cake so the birthday girl had the opportunity to blow the birthday candles. However, since Naomi was not comfortable and too shy to blow her four tiny candles, we had to ask some of her friends to volunteer to blow the candles on her cake.

Then, Naomi accidentally popped her balloon, which made me jump a bit but it was actually a great thing. I didn't have to bring her dreadful balloon home. #evil_mom

Little man was so well behaved during his sister's birthday celebration.

Once the candles were blown out, teacher asked Naomi to do the ceremonial cutting of her cake. While all the kids eagerly waited for the cake to be cut, at this point, Naomi simply could not handle the stress being the birthday girl anymore, she broke down. LOL. What kind of birthday is this? It boggles my mind that the birthday celebration was apparently very stressful for Naomi. In the end, we held the plastic knife together to cut the cake.

Cut the cake, Naomi!

Moving on, teacher made the kids to take a seat on their dining tables and began distributing a slice of cake to each child for their tea time.

The cake was quite yum!

After eating the cake, Naomi's job for that afternoon was not finished yet. She still had to distribute the birthday party favors to her friends. Last year, Naomi totally refused to do this. This year, she concluded her birthday celebration by happily passing each kid a stationery set that I bought as her birthday party favors for her friends.

Naomi distributed her birthday party favors to her friends.

Not long after that, Naomi requested to go home after her birthday celebration ended. I thought she'd like to hang out with her friends first after the celebration but no, I guess she was very tired being the birthday girl she just wanted to go home ASAP. I relented. We thanked and said goodbye to her teachers and just before we left, Naomi's teacher also prayed for her.

Baby was not sleepy, ok!

So that's how we officiated my girl's graduation from a threenager to (hopefully) Four and Fabulous. I really hope going forward, Naomi'd go easy with her temper, stubborn tenacity, confusion and mood swings. And of course, I look forward to see her talking longer sentences too!

Naomi only smiled widely during #wefie.

Happy Birthday, my darling daughter.

Here's wishing you happiness and health,
And many dreams come true
Not only on your special day
But always, all life through.

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